Farm Bureau member Craig Canoyer says it wasn’t easy growing his crop this year. While neighboring farmers were harvesting the last of their corn and soybeans, Craig was anxiously watching and waiting for his poinsettias to turn full color right before Thanksgiving.

The warm temperatures this fall encouraged the poinsettias at Canoyers Garden Center in Griswold to grow a little too fast. It took extra care to make sure the Iowa-grown poinsettias were the perfect height for the holidays, Craig says.

“I’ve had good luck over the years, and I’ve always tried to keep them short and compact because they are always sellable that way. But this year, it’s been more of a struggle,” says Craig, looking over the hundreds of red, white and pink poinsettias lined up inside the greenhouse.

A former grain and cattle farmer, Craig first built a small greenhouse for his wife, Kathy, about 30 years ago as a hobby. But soon, people started stopping by their farm, asking to buy their flowers, even though they lived on a gravel road off the highway.

So Craig built another greenhouse, and then another, as demand for the family’s locally grown flowers ...